I have so many thoughts swirling around in my head on a daily basis. Most of the time blogging gets pushed to the very back burner. It needs to become something that I develop as a habit, because writing is something that I really really like. At the age of 10, I wrote my autobiography. I still have it packed away in the basement. Every once in a while, I come across it and it gives me a good chuckle. One day when the kids find it, I’m positive they will have a good laugh too.

I have no idea if anyone is even following along, so at times it feels like I might be talking to myself. Truthfully, I don’t mind talking to myself. Sometimes I even answer myself and make myself laugh. To those people who just agreed with me…you are my people.

A few years back, I was asked a question by one of my uncles that stuck with me. He wanted to know with all the new technology…how we are documenting our kids lives?

When I was growing up we had cameras with film that you had to develop and wait for. The kids now don’t know the anticipation of waiting to see what was on that roll of film, the excitement of picking it up and ripping that envelope open. They also don’t know the disappointment when the pictures you were looking forward to didn’t turn out.

Turns out, documenting our kids lives is one of my favorite things to do.

As a Mom, I have always felt compelled to be able to give my kids a glimpse into what our house felt like when they were little. Obviously when they were really little, they wouldn’t remember anything anyways. But sometimes as you are growing up, memories become fuzzy or fade away.

I have never been, to this point at least, the mom who has shoved a camera in my kids faces constantly. I try to take pictures to document life. Taking candid shots of what is really happening, sometimes there aren’t smiles on faces…maybe there aren’t even faces in the photo.

He was literally on that bench when I went to snap the photo. They move soooo fast.

I also try my hardest to get in the photos with the kids. The angle that I have to hold the phone and be able to press the button to take the photo (with these very small hands I was blessed with) can make for the most unflattering double chin. The urge to delete the photo is strong, but I keep them because I know the kids will want to see and remember my face too.

I don’t have very many printed photos of the kids, except in frames around the house. I also do not have very many photo books of them either. However, I did take monthly photos of each of them during their first year, and I had a dry erase board that I filled out on their monthly milestones.

With all that, I made a book for each of their first 12 months of life. They love looking at those books!

I also created an email address for each kid after they were born.

Throughout the years, I have wrote them emails here or there. Sometimes it’s a quick note to tell them that I love them, sometimes it’s a funny story of something they did or said, sometimes it’s an update on the first or last day of school, and sometimes it’s an explanation on a pandemic or state of the world. People have asked me when I will turn these email addresses over to the kids for them to read. I honestly don’t have an answer for that, but trust I’ll know when the time is right.

I was blessed to have a set of truly great parents. Parents that always made parenting seem like they had it covered, like they were stable. As I grew up and got into my 20’s + 30’s, I started to wonder why I always felt less stable than they made life look. I know the truth now. It wasn’t easy, they weren’t anywhere near as stable as I perceived them as a kid.

My hope with these emails is that they can have my first hand account of struggles they didn’t know about, giving them context to life and even world events. An account of what life was truly like. Hopefully it will give them the confidence to know that just like us, they can do it too!

When each of my kids were approaching 1, I asked some people closest to them to write them a letter.

One of my favorite things to come across as a grown adult is a handwritten note, maybe I’m alone on this. Seeing a handwritten note to me transports me back to a different time. It can be my own handwriting from when I was quite a bit younger or the handwriting of someone who isn’t with us anymore.

I just ran across the card my parents gave to me the day they dropped me off at college. Each parent wrote a note in that card in their own handwriting. Reading that note today, as a parent, gives me way more context as to exactly how they were feeling.

One day when the kids get older they will have a letter from each of my parents, my sister, their godparents, their dad and I. Each in our own handwriting telling them, in each persons very special way, just how incredible it was that they were born.

These are just some of the ways that I have attempted to document life for my kids. In hopes that one day, they will have a good idea of what our family was like to fill in those fuzzy memories.

How do you document your kids lives?